How do I ask for donations?
- Ask your friends, family and co-workers. Pick up the phone, send an email or write a letter.
- Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube (or any other social media you can think of). Talk about why you are walking – and ask them to consider a gift. Share a link to your online fundraising page (see next section to learn how to set this up).
- If a donor prefers to give you an offline gift, use your envelope to collect cash and checks. Keep a record and give your donors a receipt.
How do I set up my online fundraising site?
- It’s easy!
- If you are walking as an individual, click Register as an Individual. If you are a part of a team and the first one to register, click Create a Team. If someone from your team has already registered, click Join a Team. If you register as an individual, you can always join a team later.
- You’ll need to provide your email address and create a password when you register. If you were a walker in 2019 or 2020, our system will remember you and you will be asked to log in with your past username and password (if you saved your old registration email, it will have those details). If you cannot recall your login details, please reach out to Romy Theisen to get your password reset.
- Follow along with these step by step registration instructions! We've included screenshots to make this process quick and easy. We also created a detailed COTS Walk Registration Video if you're still confused. Please note that this video was created last year − the first 20 seconds show our old website and the best contact for your walk questions is no longer Reagan, but Romy Theisen.
- Now the fun part starts! Upload photos and personalize your page, however you’d like. Reach out to your friends via email, Facebook, Twitter and more. We created a detailed COTS Walk Fundraising Video explaining how to use the COTS Fundraising Hub to maximize your fundraising success.
- Now you are up and running! Share your page on Facebook and Twitter, and send out your emails.
Not sure what to say to supporters? Use the following sample message:
I have accepted the Challenge to raise $1,000 for COTS (Committee on Temporary Shelter) as part of this year’s Virtual COTS Walk. COTS is Vermont’s largest provider of services for Vermonters who are homeless, at risk of becoming homeless, or marginally housed. The focus at COTS is on finding solutions to END homelessness — not simply creating shelters for people who are experiencing homelessness.
This year, due to the COVID-19 crisis your support is more critical than ever. Our homeless neighbors are especially vulnerable — many of our guests in shelter are elderly or have compromised immune systems. You cannot shelter at home when you are homeless. Even if you can self-quarantine in a shelter, you are still in very close proximity to other shelter guests, often several to a room in bunk beds.
I am proud to help and "walk" for COTS this year — as they work to provide shelter, services, and support to our most vulnerable families and individuals during this difficult crisis.
More information about COTS and the Virtual COTS Walk is available at www.cotsonline.org.
Thanks to the Walk sponsors, EVERY DOLLAR raised through the COTS Walk supports shelter and services for families and individuals in crisis.
Please support me in raising money for this organization! You can write a check, give cash, or donate on line using this link <insert the link generated at the top of your fundraising page>. Donating through this site is simple, fast and totally secure.
Many thanks for your support — and please forward this to others who might want to donate, too!
<insert your name>
Here are a few tips to help you make your page shine!
- Customize the text and the photo on your page to express your purpose. Adding your photo and personal tidbits helps your page stand out from the crowd.
- Tell why you’re participating in the 2021 Virtual COTS Walk — why it’s important to YOU.
- Use the online tools to send emails to your friends, family and co-workers, post your page on Facebook, and more!
Questions? Need Help?
Contact Romy Theisen at RomyT@cotsonline.org or (802) 343-6903